Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: Environment

Guiding Europe Towards Faster and Deeper Decarbonisation: An Enhanced Role for Policy Monitoring?

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Greenhouse gas monitoring – and increasingly climate policy monitoring, meaning the continuous tracking of policies with indicators – has existed since the early 1990s – and is thus a long-standing practice. For a long time, most people thought it to be a very technical exercise of low politics, but our new work demonstrates that this […]

The EU’s challenge with renewable energy expansion: What is the way forward?

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The EU is facing a key challenge in climate and energy governance. It has agreed to address climate change under the Paris Agreement, and put forward increasingly ambitious policy targets for 2020, 2030 and 2050. However, it is increasingly struggling to fulfil them. The European Green Deal and the proposed European Climate Law reinforce the […]

Critique as an opportunity for legitimation: the case of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme

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Criticisms directed at the European Union (EU) and its institutions over the past decade have often been interpreted as a sign of fundamental weakness. However, using the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) as an example, Claire Godet argues that contestation should not be seen as a sign of failure, but rather as an opportunity for […]

Forty years of green

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The foundation, on 13 January 1980 in Karlsruhe, of a nation-wide ecological party in West Germany came as a surprise. Not the idea itself: the time was ripe for creating a strong political movement based on environmental concerns, frustration with representative democracy, and radically pacifist convictions in the middle of the Cold War arms race. […]

The new Danish climate law – a small light in the climate darkness?

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The school strikes and new environmental social movements have raised awareness of climate change and pushed it higher up on the political agenda. In some countries, it has changed public opinion, for example in Denmark where climate change was the main topic in the Spring European and national parliamentary elections. Indeed, the elections are known […]

Better policy monitoring required to underpin decarbonisation

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The United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 25) is currently underway. The success of the Paris Agreement depends on the effective monitoring of climate policy measures. Political scientists at TU Darmstadt explain in a new study what it takes to achieve this. The signatories of the 2015 Paris Agreement not only agreed to limit global […]

Critique as an Opportunity for Legitimation: The Case of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme

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Criticisms directed at the European Union (EU) and its institutions over the past decade have often been interpreted as a sign of fundamental weakness. However, using the EU Emissions Trading Scheme as an example, Claire Godet argues that contestation should not be seen as a sign of failure, but rather as an opportunity for justification.

Could green hydrogen save jobs at Bridgend and Scunthorpe? Only if the UK rejoins the EU ETS.

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On 7th June 2019 the website WalesOnline reported that the Ford engine plant at Bridgend in Wales is due to close next year with a loss of 1,700 jobs. Many of the engineering jobs at the plant are highly skilled and well paid, so their loss will have a devastating effect on the local economy. […]

Fighting climate change with hydrogen technologies should be the main issue of the European elections

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The people of the United Kingdom are lucky that they have a chance to vote in the Euopean parliamentary elections of 2019. If Theresa May and the Brexit wing of her party had had their way, then the United Kingdom would have left the EU on 29th March this year, excluding the British people from […]

Hydrogen cells and agriculture: The future of green energy in the countryside

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Power to gas technology could go further to save the environment from fossil fuel emmissions, by increasing the use of clean fuel from sources of wind, solar and tidal power in rural areas. Companies such as ITM Power in the United Kingdom are already manufacturing electrolyser systems used for power to gas storage and hydrogen […]

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